Child Care

Child care in the City of Toronto is provided by more than 900 licensed child care centres and 19 licensed home child care agencies working with over 2,000 approved home care providers.

Child care is available for children starting from 0 months (infants).  After school programs are offered for school-aged children (Grade 1 and older).

A Parents’ Guide to Licensed Child Care in Toronto

This online guide will help parents understand the licensed child care system, recognize the signs of a quality program and find child care that meets the needs of their family.

City of Toronto Child Care Services

Children’s Services manages the child care service system in the City of Toronto.  It is responsible for planning and managing a broad range of child care services. These child care services include fee subsidy, wage subsidy, family resource centres, special needs resourcing and summer day camps. In addition to its service management responsibilities for child care, the Children’s Services Division also directly operates 52 child care sites.

Click here for information about City of Toronto child care services, hours, fees and registration.

Child Care Subsidy

The City of Toronto provides a child care subsidy to eligible families. The subsidy is calculated based on your family income and can vary from 100% to 10%.  If you get 90% subsidy, it means that you will be paying only 10% of the child care costs, and Toronto Children’s Services will cover 90% of your child care costs.

For more information on how to apply call 416-392-5437 or visit the website.

Finding Child Care

This online Child Care Finder can help you locate child care centres and services in Toronto by age, location, type of service or name of provider.

Ontario Early Years Centres

Ontario Early Years Centres are places where parents and caregivers can:

  • Take part with their children in a range of programs and activities
  • Get answers to questions about parenting and child development
  • Get information about programs and services for young children and families
  • Talk to early years professionals as well as other parents and caregivers in the community.

Early Years Centres are open to all parents and caregivers with young children (up to age 6).  All programs are free; however the Centres do not offer child care.

For more information about Early Years Centres, visit the OEYC website.

This directory will help you to find Early Years Centres in Toronto.

Etobicoke Brighter Futures Coalition

The Etobicoke Brighter Futures Coalition (EBFC) is a group of community partners that work together to plan, develop and deliver services and programs to improve the health and well-being of vulnerable young children within the context of their homes and their communities.

You can learn more about their work here.

Information for Newcomer Parents

Growing Up in a New Land: A Guide for Newcomer Parents

This online booklet is for newcomer parents with children aged 0-6 years. It contains information on community organizations and government support programs as well as resources and tips for settling and adjusting in Canada while honouring your culture and heritage.

Preparing Your Children for School

Parenting and Family Literacy Centres

Parenting and Family Literacy Centres help young children prepare for kindergarten and encourage families to be a part of their children’s learning by:

  • Helping children build basic literacy and numeracy skills through stories, music, reading and playing
  • Lending books in different languages so parents can read to their children in their first language
  • Helping children and families to become familiar with school routines
  • Giving children and families the chance to spend time with other families
  • Connecting families with appropriate community resources for special needs, health and other related services.

The Parenting and Family Literacy Centres are free to attend and no pre-registration is required.

A list of schools with Parenting and Family Literacy Centres in Toronto is available here.

Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY)

HIPPY, which stands for Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters, is an internationally recognized program that assists newcomer parents with preparing their preschool-aged children for kindergarten through in-home instruction.  It operates in over 7 cities, including Toronto.

In Toronto West, the HIPPY program is run by Working Women Community Centre.  To learn more about the program, visit their website.